Prior Learning Assessment (PLA)
YOU'VE EARNED IT!
PLA may help you earn up to 60 college credits as a result of the learning you gained outside the traditional classroom setting. In addition to saving tuition dollars, you can complete your bachelor’s degree in up to half the time.
“PLA has transformed my life and helped me achieve my academic dreams.”
Bonita M. Vaughn
Former Student & Alumna
ABOUT THE PLA PROGRAM
PLA awards Martin University credits for courses in which you demonstrate college-level learning. This includes but is not limited to: work history, military, and volunteer service, and other life experiences.
Martin University acknowledges that adult learners bring with them lifelong knowledge that is equivalent to what would be learned in college courses and this knowledge can often be applied to a degree. Prior Learning Assessment (PLA), is a way to earn college credit for college-level knowledge you have attained outside the traditional college classroom. Adult learners can use our course catalog and browse our course descriptions to find courses that match the knowledge they already possess.
Eligibility for Enrollment in PLA:
Successful completion of ENG 125, CTE 150 and ENG 135 (or equivalents)
Portfolio development requires a great deal of writing, making college-level writing skills a necessity.
Adult learner must be pursuing an undergraduate degree
GPA of 2.0 or above
Follow these steps to get started:
Obtain your degree plan and meet with your Admissions or Academic Advisor.
Complete the PLA Pre-Assessment, “Am I a Good Candidate?” form.
Contact the Academic Affairs Office for additional information at (317) 543-4890.
PLA & Portfolio FAQs
What is Prior Learning Assessment?
Prior Learning Assessment (PLA), which includes Portfolio Assessment, is a way to earn college credit for college-level knowledge you have attained outside the traditional college classroom. Martin University acknowledges that adult learners bring with them lifelong knowledge that is equivalent to what would be learned in college courses and this knowledge can often be applied to a degree. Adult learners can use our course catalog and browse our course descriptions to find courses that match knowledge they already possess.
What’s a PLA portfolio?
The PLA portfolio process involves creating a written presentation that is assembled and submitted to earn credit for knowledge you have that is equivalent to what would be taught in a specific course. The portfolio addresses a course description and learning outcomes through a written narrative and a collection of evidence that supports your knowledge and background.
How many credits can I earn through portfolio assessment?
If an adult learner has previously earned college credit they will need to work with their advisor to learn more about their unique Martin University Degree plan.
How do I create my portfolio?
Martin University offers a course that provides structure and guidance for adult learners interested in earning credit for prior learning. PLA-130, the Prior Learning Assessment course, should be discussed with your Mentor/Advisor to clarify the process and complete the pre-assessment(s) which will provide a greater understanding of options for earning college credit for prior learning. PLA-130 provides a guide for understanding experiential learning and the portfolio development process. During the PLA 130 course you will develop and submit your portfolio for assessment for each course being challenged for credit. The assessment (portfolio) will be evaluated by both the PLA Director and content area specialists for consideration of credit.
Are there any prerequisites?
Successful completion of ENG 125, CTE 150 and ENG 135 (or equivalent) is required prior to enrolling in PLA 130. Portfolio development requires a great deal of writing, so college-level writing skills are a necessity. Other prerequisites include a GPA of 2.0 or above and the adult learner must be pursuing an undergraduate degree.
In what subject areas can I do portfolio assessment?
Are there subject areas where portfolio assessment cannot or should not be attempted?
Most course requirements can be satisfied via portfolio. However, there may be a few courses that do not offer students the opportunity to earn credit. Further, English composition courses are not eligible for the PLA portfolio process. The Prior Learning Assessment/Portfolio Department can provide additional information about this.
How long does the process take?
What are my chances of earning credit?
Possess a realistic view of their knowledge
Follow the instructions carefully
Challenge a course (or courses) that is appropriate to their knowledge and skills
Submit a well-organized portfolio that pays attention to details
Seek help from the PLA-130 course instructor and Mentor/Advisor, when needed.
How much does PLA cost? Is PLA covered by Financial Aid?
The per-credit tuition for PLA-130 is the same as for other University courses.
Federal Financial Aid can be used for all University courses which include PLA 130.